"You get three wishes," the genie said. "I wish for a Duck for Dirk, and My Secret Agent Lover Man for me, and a beautiful little house for us to liv...more"You get three wishes," the genie said. "I wish for a Duck for Dirk, and My Secret Agent Lover Man for me, and a beautiful little house for us to live in happiliy ever after." "Your wishes are granted. Mostly," said the genie.
My wishes were not granted, mostly. I was prepared to read a short, but pleasantly shocking, quirky urban young adult fantasy novel of the ageless sort. Something that has earned being referenced in every other modern fairytale review. But I was disappointed by something so decadent and otherwordly silly of novella-sized proportions - which is maybe hip and maybe multi-layered and satirical and whatnot - that I failed to get it.
Please don't misunderstand. I am not complaining about the "plot" or what the story deals with in general. I do appreciate that it celebrates love in countless forms and outlets between friends, gay lovers, couples who have already split up but cannot let go, parent and child, human and pet, love in different modes of bliss and hurt, family as patchwork as it gets, forgiveness and beauty. I draw my hat because drugs, AIDS, the downsides of stardom and other problems occuring in Hollywood and elsewhere are not glossed over, but brazenly interwoven into everyday life.
I felt let down, because "Weetzie Bat" could only be compared to a fairytale in the sense that both dump unbelievable or exciting facts onto the reader using a detached point of view and a really compact, condensed style: The evil frog turned green with envy, followed the princess into her plush chamber and impregnated her on the spot. He left the castle seven nights before his daughter Swampsea was born. "Good riddance," said her mother, now a royal single parent, and employed a gnarly-horned wet-nurse from hell. Oops! Wrong tale! The man's name was Valentine Jah-Love and the woman's name was Ping Chong. [...] "Jah!" cried Valentine, lifting his stormy face up in the greenish electric light. "You'll have to stay here. It will rain for seven days and seven nights." It rained and rained. Everything in "Weetzie Bat" happens immediately and reminded me of the times in my childhood when I tried to made up a story, started by choosing the characters' names with painful elaboration - the wackier, the better -, moved on to outline what was supposed to happen to whom, jotted down some experimental dialogue and then ... left it to its own devices, because playing some other promising game of make-believe had gained my attention.
In addition to the rush and the lack of filling everything is so easy and too superficial. I.e. My Secret Agent Lover Man (that's a character's name) and Weetzie successfully "make" a couple of movies with the help of one or two friends and their house-mates, who function as actors, wardrobe people and whoever is needed, and earn enough money to live, indulge in their favorite sushi and buy a new car although there is no talk about financing or selling the projects or even of anybody watching the outcomes.
Plus my expectation of a magically version of an 80s L.A. had to be satisfied by a voodoo practicing seductress popping in as a supporting character and by a genie suffering from occupational burn-out who transplants Weetzie and Dirk from being teenaged, desillusioned lesson-cutters to living as house-owners on the look-out for the perfect, respective "Duck" (guy).
Please forgive me, enthusiastic Weetzie fans, for missing the spectacular wonder Weetzie's adventures are supposed to present and for being impatient enough to skip all four sequels without dishing out a second chance to Cherokee, Witch Baby and yet unknown Angel Juan to eventually wow me.(less)
***4.5 stars, because of that Curran thing. I have been as well entertained as I expected spending time with Kate Daniels, but his behavior annoyed me...more***4.5 stars, because of that Curran thing. I have been as well entertained as I expected spending time with Kate Daniels, but his behavior annoyed me to bits. ***(less)
"Violet, I realized. Those eyes of his were the most amazing shade of violet. I'd never seen so beautiful a color." The beginning chapters that dealt w...more"Violet, I realized. Those eyes of his were the most amazing shade of violet. I'd never seen so beautiful a color." The beginning chapters that dealt with overprotected Ali (Alice) Bell's patents and younger sister being devoured by the invisible zombies her father had been paranoid about since his own parents' demise really weren't half bad. There was a fine built-up of suspense and lurking danger and a nice mix of conflicted feelings evoked by the understandable, but in the end fatal, revolt Ali stages to give her beloved sibling the 'normal' experience of showing off her skills to her family and friends at dance recital night, and the ultra-annoying, but in hindsight sensible precautions of Ali's seemingly wacky, return-to-our-metal-enforced-secure-abode-before-twilight Dad.
I was indeed curious to learn why the rest of the unsuspecting, night-loving Americans survived night after night without more tales and reports of mangled-by-rabid-dogs corpses popping up in the daily news, why only the kin of eaten victims seem to be able to see the monsters and why Ali herself was spared from being part of the buffet.
But the arrival of a bubbly, queen-bee sidekick within the brand-new bounds of a post-move-in-with-her-grandparents'-new-girl-in-class High School combined with a whole gaggle of hyper-dangerous, hyper-sexy, in all likelihood paranormally gifted jerks quickly doused the flickering flame of interest.
The above quoted passage about those colorfully one-of-a-kind irises gave my dying curiosity the final kick in the guts.
I do not regret abandoning the book after covering 16% of the pages. Ali, Kat and their purplish bad boys can jump down the rabbit hole into zombietastic Wonderland on their own. I am out. Off with their heads, out with their eyes!(less)